News & Runway

Fashion’s Night Out NYC 2012: The Events

Inside the Kate Spade boutique

I spent my Fashion Night’s Out going in and out of so many stores that it would be impossible to recount them all. Across the board, however, I noticed that this year seemed more commercial than in all of the years past. It's likely that many stores realized they were needlessly wasting money on frills that never turned into sales.

Many boutiques like Alexander Wang and Diane von Furstenberg simply relied on the star power of their designers to draw crowds, costing little more than a few minutes of their time and allowing lingering fashion fans to shop their boutique in anticipation of their arrival. I was, in fact, surprised to see a number of people shopping at even the higher end stores like Scoop and Prada.

Food also seemed to play a more crucial role this year — and not the free kind. Food trucks were spread across the city, drawing long lines and possibly the most smiles. They also added an element of fun to the streets where, quite honestly, the most interesting things seemed to be happening. I spoke with people throughout the night asking them what they thought about FNO and most of the people who were out were students or young people aspiring to be in the fashion industry; if nothing else, FNO is a great opportunity to let everyone get involved and feel like they are part of the industry — even if many lamented the lack of freebies this year.

Food truck munchies

Personally, my favorite events were the ones that incorporated shopping by offering something special and limited-edition. Chanel, for example, with its limited-edition polishes or Balenciaga with a limited-edition Grace Coddington collection. The events that relied on celebrities seemed to make for needless chaos and the most disappoinment — chief among them was the MAC store where Azealia Banks appeared. Billed as a public event, some fans waited as long as three hours to see her only to be told it was, more or less, VIP only. Ironically, I saw a number of bold face names including Padma Lakshmi, Patrick McMullan, and Rob Evans just roaming around…turns out you don't need to wait in line to see famous people in New York.

Soho people traffic